THE PARABLE OF THE TALENTS


“…He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not winnow; so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.’ But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You ‘knew’ that I reap where I have not sowed, and gather where I have not winnowed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to every one who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.’” (Mt 25: 24-30)


The wicked and slothful servant not only presumes to “know” his “master,” but feels entitled to judge the master’s character as “hard,” and his wealth as unjustly obtained, because the master supposedly “reaped where he did not sow.” It’s similar to the attitude of the Pharisees towards Christ, as to an upstart who was reaping and gathering in “their” fields. Both the servant in the parable and Christ’s opponents choose fear over faith, and are hence blinded to their own true characters, to the true character of the Master, and to the nature of His gifts. And this choice casts them into the misery that comes hand-in-hand with a faithless, fear-filled life: 1. Self-isolated inactivity, or “hiding” God’s goodness, given to each of us, “in the ground,” rather than participating in the creative flow of His energies in this world, by “investing” them with others; 2. Spiritual blindness or “the outer darkness,” which fails to perceive God’s goodness, both in Him and in us, as given to each of us in different ways, according to our different vocations; and 3. The “weeping” and “gnashing of teeth” involved in envy and resentment, which come from that inactivity and blindness.


Let me trust You today, Lord, as You have trusted us, to “have” and share of Your gifts, which we have not sown. “Your own of Your own, we offer to You, in all and for all! (Τὰ σὰ ἐκ τῶν σῶν σοὶ προσφέρομεν κατὰ πάντα καὶ διὰ πάντα. / Твоя от твоих, тебе приносяще, о всех и за вся.)”

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